Northampton's 'Paris Peddlers' brought together by cancer embark on 500-mile journey

The Paris Peddlers - made of Paul, Mark, Damion, Keith, Terry, Dave, Andrew, Dave, Aaron, Phil and Warren - will set off from Northampton today.
The Paris Peddlers - made of Paul, Mark, Damion, Keith, Terry, Dave, Andrew, Dave, Aaron, Phil and Warren - will set off from Northampton today.

They say they are only 13 ordinary men, but today a team of cyclists who have been brought together by cancer will set off from Northampton on a 500 mile trip for cancer.

A group of friends who have all been affected "in one way or another" by cancer will leave Northampton's County Cricket Ground and pedal across the country to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.

It will take five days and some 530 miles, but the 13 mean behind the "Paris Peddlers" aim to make it in one piece and raise thousands of pounds for breast and prostate cancer charities.

One of the organisers, Paul Merry, told the Chronicle and Echo: "I'm ready to get on with it. The training over the past 14 months has flown by but these last two weeks leading up to it have gone slowly.

"It all came about when my wife was diagnosed with cancer in 2017. It felt like at times there was nothing I could do to help, or fix what she was going through.

"So I came up with this idea where I could do something."

Paul ended up getting in touch with friends and family to join him on the expedition - and now, Mark, Damion, Keith, Terry, Dave, Andrew, Dave, Aaron, Philip and Warren are all in to help each other make it to the finish line.

Now, after 14 months of training, they are ready to pedal through Dover, Calais, Amiens, Compiegne and in to Paris.

The finish line is at the iconic Arc de Triomphe, where they will be met by friends and family.

The team's original fundraising goal was £3,000 - but across two fundraising pages, they have already more than double that and raised some £6,250.

Paul said: "I'm a bit apprehensive. I'm not normally the nervy type but when I think about what people like my wife have been through I know I can do this.

"There'll be good banter along the way. It'll be a great time."

The Paris Peddlers will set off from NCCC at 1pm this afternoon. For more information, visit their JustGiving page.